Experience, Engage, Work in the Humanities  

 

Our Mission

The challenges of the 21st century demand humanistic thought. Leaders and citizens must integrate information from diverse fields to forge creative solutions in collaboration with others, and implement them with moral concern for the lives they affect. Accordingly, 21st-century liberal arts education must be centered on: interdisciplinarity, fostering flexible understanding that bridges disciplines; collaboration, developing skills of listening and communication that enable creative cooperation; and community, cultivating empathy and ethical sensitivity for others. With these as our core principles, the Humanities Initiative at F&M promotes humanistic inquiry as the core of liberal arts education for the 21st century, via initiatives that foster humanistic thought and demonstrate the relevance of the humanities throughout students’ undergraduate experience and faculty members’ intellectual lives. 

The Humanities Initiative Directors & Student Advisory Board

The Humanities Initiative at F&M welcomes and encourages student participation.  The Student Advisory Board provides a vehicle for  interested F&M students to directly engage in leadership of Humanities-related activities at F&M, as well as to provide the student voice and perspective for the Humanities Initiative Co-Directors.  More information about the board is available here.   

Humanities Initiative Co - Directors (2019)

Peter Jaros, Associate Professor of English - peter.jaros@fandm.edu

Jon Stone, Associate Professor of Russian and Russian Studies - jon.stone@fandm.edu

Humanities Initiative Student Advisors (2019)

Esmeralda Rodriguez ('19), Moises Soto-Brito ('21 ), Rachel Strompf ('21)

 

 

 

We recognize that in whatever path of life students choose, the ability to understand differing values, identify conflicts in thinking and reasoning, and find answers to complex questions is essential for cultivating qualities of innovation and leadership.

That's why we emphasize study in intimate classes, with the student-to-faculty ratio in some humanities majors, such as philosophy, as small as 5:1. And we also offer opportunities for field study and research that students might usually expect to pursue in the sciences or other fields. Students at F&M experience and engage with the questions that students elsewhere might only read about.

This is part of the distinctiveness  in our approach to the humanities. Study at F&M spans the full range of study of human culture and the human experience, from classical archaeology to literature, to philosophy and cultural studies, and through languages.

 

Humanities Majors:  Professionally Prepared and Career-Ready

F&M embraces the principle that students who are linguistically, intellectually and culturally equipped to communicate successfully are better prepared to thrive in our multicultural society, both in the United States and around the world.  Recent studies bear this out, showing humanities majors excelling across a variety of academic, career and life skill measures. Use the links below to further explore the many benefits of studying the humanities. 

Humanities Majors Today, Field Leaders Tomorrow!

Prominent leaders with a background in the humanities can be found in every sector of business and industry today.   Explore the links below to see more from a few who credit their career success to their studies in the humanities.   The  National Humanities Alliance website  curates an ever-expanding list with additional names of humanities graduates at the top of their respective fields.

  • Business and Finance

    Business and Finance Image

    “I never had finance or accounting, yet I help run a huge business. I learned communications, research, and critical thinking."  Clyde Tuggle, Senior Vice President and Chief Public Affairs Officer of Coca-Cola, speaking about his undergraduate degrees in German and Economics, and his Master's of Divinity. 

     

  • Government and International Relations

    Government and International Relations Image

    California Governor Jerry Brown,  who holds a B.A. in Classics, notes the value of  studying and understanding the humanities as "...windows on what it is to be human."  

  • Media and Entertainment

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    "One of the many things I learned at the end of that Classics corridor down which I ventured at the age of 18, in search of something I could not then define, was this, written by the Greek author Plutarch: ‘What we achieve inwardly will change outer reality.’ That is an astonishing statement and yet proven a thousand times every day of our lives. It expresses, in part, our inescapable connection with the outside world, the fact that we touch other people’s lives simply by existing."  -Author J.K. Rowling,  B.A. in Classics and French

  • Philanthropic / Non Profit Sector

    Philanthropic / Non Profit Sector Image

    “Spend the time to ask yourself who you can get who can be better than you. Constantly look for new ideas, new eyes, new perspectives.” Andrea Jung,  President and CEO of Grameen America, former CEO of Avon, B.A. in English Literature.

  • Science, Medicine and Research

    Science, Medicine and Research Image

    "The difference between science and the arts is not that they are different sides of the same coin...or even different parts of the same continuum, but rather, they are manifestations of the same thing.  The arts and sciences are avatars of human creativity."  - Mae Jemison,  Physician and Astronaut, B.A. in African and Afro-American Studies

  • Technology

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    “Studying philosophy taught me two things. I learned how to write really clearly. I learned how to follow an argument all the way down, which is invaluable in running meetings." - Philosophy major Stewart Butterfield, Co-Founder of Flickr and Slack Technologies  

     

  • F&M Graduates

    F&M Graduates Image

    • Former counsel to the U.S. House of Representatives, Stan Brand, graduated with a major in English.
    • Actor Treat Williams, of the TV series "Heartland" and "Everwood" majored in Drama, now configured as a major in Theatre.
     

The Humanities in Practice at F&M

WVAC Student Impressions
Story 10/16/2020

Winter Visual Arts Center Opens Doors, Crosses Boundaries

After five years of dreaming, conceptualizing, planning, and constructing, a much-anticipated vision has come to life. This fall, the Susan and Benjamin Winter Visual Arts Center at Franklin &...

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Story 9/18/2020

Alumnus Returns to Perform Sufi Fusion at F&M

Haunting instrumental strains are background to the melodic voice of Franklin & Marshall College alumnus Umer Piracha '07, who will give a virtual campus performance of Sufi fusion Sept. 24. 

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Story 9/6/2020

Acting is Essential in Storytelling Performances

April Armstrong, who has appeared on stage, screen and television as an actor and singer, recently discussed the difference between a one-person show and a storytelling performance, which she will...

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Story 7/28/2020

Scholarly Spotlight - Languages

 Scholarly Spotlight features the work of faculty on a regular basis. Here’s a sampling of recent publications by members of several languages departments.

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Story 7/1/2020

F&M Senior Takes the Musical Road Less Traveled

Enjoying a virtual internship with SiriusXM, senior Vanessa Robustelli notes how her F&M music courses helped her discover career paths she had not considered. 

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Story 6/22/2020

Socrates Citation: Richard S. and Ann B. Barshinger...

Professor Carbon created the theory curriculum at F&M and also accomplished something remarkable: he imparted to students of widely varying musical backgrounds the joys of creating music. 

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October 23
event 10/23/2020

In Person Low Stakes Read-Aloud

Writers House Dining Room

 Low Stakes Read-Aloud RESCHEDULED: Friday, October  23 6:30pm-7:30pm Open to members of the F&M...

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November 05
event 11/5/2020

From Morocco to France and Israel: 20th Century Jewish...

Virtual Event

While Yona's study focuses on the family from a micro scale, its guiding question seeks to...

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November 12
event 11/12/2020

Federico Fellini at 100 - Film Retrospective

Virtual Event

Federico Fellini, 8 1/2, Italy 1963, 139 mins. Marcello Mastroianni plays Guido...

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November 18
event 11/18/2020

Italian Book Club - Clash of Civilizations for an Elevator...

Virtual Event

The Department of Italian Studies and Hebrew proposes a book reading group, open to all students of...

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